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Student work, urban design
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Oscar Malaspina Quevedo, MAUD 2012

Project Title

Dam Urbanism


Rahul Mehrotra and Gareth Doherty, Extreme Urbanism 2



Dam Urbanism addresses the processes of desertification and soil erosion currently affecting India, along with severe water scarcity issues projected for 2025. The proposed strategy is a “landscape acupuncture” operation comprising a network of decentralized micro-infrastructures combining housing, landscape, and civic space. Not only does this operation seek to “slow down” the erosion process stressing Mumbai’s metropolitan region, it also provides a set of publicly orientated programs for the dam’s immediate urban context.

Navi Mumbai Hills is currently threatened by urban expansion, the effects of industry, and quarry activities, yet the site has great potential to become an important metropolitan park. The aim of the operations in this project is to protect the future park by clarifying its edges with the city. For this, the idea is to build 13 micro dams that not only collect rainwater during the monsoon, but act also as a hybrid infrastructure that reconfigures the existing urban conditions. The Inhabited Dam is one of the key components of the Dam Urbanism strategy hosting both multi-family housing and civic spaces.

This approach to infrastructure provision is significant in the current context as India’s central government moves to redress the nation’s infrastructure deficiencies.

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